FBI hopes plans for real life purges are a hoax
Residents across America are being warned of possible real life purges (inspired by the movie “The Purge”) rumored to commence over the next few weekends.
In Louisville, police are warning residents of a potential purge after fliers began to pop up around the city.
While authorities are hoping this is a hoax, the FBI and LPD are urging residents to stay in their homes during the scheduled “purge.”
“Due to circumstances that have trended nationally in regards to flash mob violence, in light of what occurred this past spring here, we realize that these things can occur in an instance,” said Louisville Police Sgt. Phil Russell.
A Katy Perry concert is scheduled on Saturday night in Louisville and One Direction will be appearing in Detroit on Saturday and Sunday evenings. Area police are thinking these may be targets.
And Louisville isn’t the only city in America that is being targeted.
Below is a list of cities where fliers have been found:
- Las Vegas, Nevada: Saturday, August 16 from 12 a.m. to 6 .a.m
- Phoenix, Arizona: Wednesday, August 20 from 12 a.m. to 6 a.m.
- Jacksonville, Florida: Sunday, August 31 from 12 a.m. to 6 a.m.
- Louisville, Kentucky: Friday, August 15 from 8:00 p.m. 6:30 a.m.
- Detroit, Michigan: Friday, August 15 from 12 a.m. to 6 a.m.
- Los Angeles, California: Saturday, August 16 from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m.
- San Antonio, Texas: Friday, August 15 from 12 a.m. 6 p.m.
- Atlanta, Georgia: Sunday, August 31 from 12 a.m.
- Vallejo, California: Friday August 31 from 12 a.m. to 6 a.m.
- St. Paul, Minnesota: Sunday, August 31 from 12 a.m. to 6 a.m.
- Interlachen, Florida: Sunday, August 31 from 12 a.m. to 6 a.m.
- Lake Worth, Florida: Sunday, August 31 from 12 a.m. to 6 a.m.
- Milwaukee, Wisconsin: Sunday, August 31 from 12 a.m. to 6 a.m.
- Houston, Texas: Friday, August 31 from 12 a.m. to 6 a.m.
- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Sunday, August 24 8 p.m.
- San Francisco, California: Friday, August 22 5 a.m.
- Miami, Florida: Date and Time TBA
- Tallahassee, Florida: Date and Time TBA
- Bay Area, California: Date and Time TBA
As additional dates are released, the aforementioned list will be updated.
“We are aware of “The Purge” postings (based on the fiction contained in a movie) and are looking into this. Obviously, we will not discuss tactics, but as with any perceived threat, we appreciate the assistance of the public in passing that along to us,” said Jacksonville Sheriff John Rutherford.
Officials say cities that are not on the list should still use caution.
Potential targets would be sporting events, concerts, fairs, and any other places that would have a high person count. If you are traveling, make sure you know your exact route and try to avoid any high crime or high gang areas.
The police and FBI are taking this very seriously.
In July, as “The Purge Anarchy” hit theaters, a social media “purge” began circulating nude photos of teenagers.
One Instagram page, which was eventually reported and taken down, posted “DM [Direct Message] us dirty pictures and messages of people and we’ll tag them.”
The FBI tracked down an online “purge” owner in Miami, Florida.
The FBI said hopefully this is all a hoax, but it is always best to prepare. If you’re observant and careful, everything should be fine.
Below are a few links from the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security on what to do in an active shooter situation.
Authorities do not know where the threats originated from, but say they are investigating a group of teenagers.
If citizens see anything suspicious, or know of criminal activity taking place you are asked to contact authorities immediately.
[Last updated on August 17, 2014, at 12:39 a.m.]
“We are investigating a teen for starting ‘the purge’ threats,” said Louisville Police Sgt. Phil Russell. “Despite the fact that nothing happened on the night of the purported purge, we aren’t taking any chances and are increasing security at the state fair over the weekend to offset any potential mischief.”
Authorities said it does appear to be a hoax, but they are not letting their guard down.
Police would not release the teens name to Ocala Post, but provided the following statement that the teen allegedly gave to his school newspaper.
“I was sitting in my house and watching ‘The Purge,’ and I thought of the tweet and picture that started it. But didn’t think it’d get that big from there. I didn’t mean any harm by this at all. I love my city.”
Police said when they visited the teen at his home, he told them he was only kidding. According to police, the teen also stated he thought it would be fun.
There have not been any legitimate threats of a “purge” in Ocala; only speculation.
[Last updated on August 24, 2014, at 12:28 a.m.]
Authorities said based upon the weight of evidence, the fliers appear to represent a series of poorly executed Internet hoaxes, primarily perpetrated by small groups of teenagers that have said, “they though it would be fun.”
The FBI said they will continue investigating the threats and the individuals responsible for making the threats.
At this time, according to the FBI, no charges have been filed against any of the teens involved.
—By Michael LaTulipe—